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Not a Step Father yet, I love my girlfriend but can't stand her kids...

step1973's picture

I'm not a step father yet but I don't know where to seek other peoples help on this, I hope you all don't mind. I'm currently living with my girlfriend which has 2 kids of her own. Boy 9 and girl 7. I have a boy 10 and a girl 7 as well. My 2 kids are well behaved and well mannered. Her kids are pretty much... I call it Hellions. No respect, liars and can't remember a thing anyone tells them. I've lived with my girlfriend and her 2 kids for 1 1/2 yrs and nothing has improved. I have tried to teach them and raise them like my own and nothing works. They tell my girlfriend that they like me but that's not the point. It's that they are just out of control. The boy has ADHD, the girl just never listens. Together, they are a handful. They are both immature for their age compared to mine. My kids say "please" "Thank you" etc. Her kids seems to still talk like babies. All I hear all day and night is "Mommy" non-stop. My kids only ask for me when they actually need me as oppose to hers calling mommy about getting a towel to shower for instance. Her boy seems to want to talk about everything "that no one cares about". "Mommy, I got 2 pieces of paper today". Now why would anyone want to know that? My kids never did that. I've been around so many kids in my lifetime but her boy is so high maintenance. Teamed up with her girl, they both drive me up the wall. I've brought it up to my girlfriend and she says it's ADHD. Well, I can't stand it and it stresses me out everyday coming back from work and I want to just relax a bit. I can't see myself ever adapting to her kids because of their upbringing has obviously made them "rule the world".

I feel like I need to breakup with my girlfriend because of her kids but it might seem selfish. Am I wrong and am I a bad person for thinking this way? I raised my kids already and I don't feel like I need to go any further to raise her kids since in 1 1/2 yrs nothing has been accomplished. I thought I was able to change things by sticking around and assisting but it's not happening. Is it time for me to leave? The only thing in this relationship that I'm not complaining about is my girlfriend only. It's like I want her but not her kids.

Any advise would be helpful and don't think it'll offend me. I'm begging for happiness at this point. Thanks all!

DaizyDuke's picture

I think it would be more selfish of you to stay in the relationship and situation that you know is going to drive you crazy (for the rest of your life, if you're thinking about marriage)

I also don't think it's fair to your kids to stay in a realtionship where their rules/expectations are different than your GF's. I'm wondering, are your kids happy with the current situation?

step1973's picture

That's exactly what I was thinking. It would be unfair to both my kids, my girlfriend and her kids that I'd be staying just because. I think they can find happiness without me being grumpy or depressed all the time. My kids are actually happy and know no different other than the fact that I have to nurture her kids more than my own just to help them walk straight. Make sense? So I'm actually leaning that way to end it. Thanks DaizyDuke.

bioandstep2009's picture

I've been living with my now DH for the last 2+ years and it was rough at first. Our two kids (his and mine) were about a year apart. I have a girl, he has a boy. It was very frustrating at first because you don't really know someone (kids included) until you live with them. My SS was lacking boundaries, rules, structure and was as you describe your would be stepkids i.e. immature for his age, unable or unwilling to do anything for himself (always, "Daaaaddddy, can you get me_____" and NEVER a please or thank you), doesn't have ADHD but he has some attention issues for sure and is just rambunctious, loud, has to be the center of attention etc. There are days when I have a low tolerance for him, and others where it's a bit better. All you can do, if you love your girlfriend and want a future with her, is to sit her down and talk to her honestly. I had to have many many many heart to hearts with my now DH about my stepson's behavior and in many ways, I had to help him to learn how to parent better. Thankfully, he was open minded and really took my advice and suggestions to heart. I know you said that you girlfriend says it's the ADHD, but some of this stuff just sounds like the way they were parented by her. Is she open minded enough to hear constructive criticism?

step1973's picture

The thing is I've spoken to her about her son several times but I don't think it's going anywhere. What I mean is, she is doing something about it by discipline, teaching, doing the right things but I don't think he's absobing any of that. He's always getting in trouble as well as her daughter. It's a never ending battle. I guess my ultimate question would be, where is my limit on trying at this? I'm a very patient guy and they both have already exceeded my meter several times. I'm at a point that when I walk into his room I just want to break everything just to make him mad so he will feel how mad he makes me.

bioandstep2009's picture

Hmmm, sounds like you've already tried and she has too in terms of trying to change their behavior. Sorry to say, but I don't think this is going to work out. For me, I used to get so frustrated, upset, angry, we argued, I cried by myself etc. but the only thing that I WAS happy with and didn't want to lose was my now DH. My love for him outweighed any amount of negativity thrown my way via my SS or the XW. Time and events worked things out but it doesn't sound like it's having any effect in our situation. As hard as it is, I think you already know what you must do. Good luck!

step1973's picture

I really appreciate it. This summer was really bad for me too. We went on a vacation with 4 kids. My kids NEVER caused a problem. Her's was a total disaster. It made a could-be-great vacation into a very stressful one. I had to hear him complain about everything just to have his way. We don't give in but it was just a pain to hear his mouth every minute complaining about anything and everything. "Mommy can I have this, can I have that?" "Mommy, I want to sit here instead of there because I sat there last time." Are you kidding me? My kids give up seats in being courteous. I'm really thinking about bailing this relationship. This is part of the reason why I haven't asked her in marriage yet. I'm not comfortable with her kids and no where near. Good luck with your neverends.

quippers01's picture

You had a "Vacation in Hell" this summer too? I feel your pain there. It almost destroyed my marriage. I just kept asking myself (through the whole trip and all summer since) "what the hell have I gotten myself into".

If we had taken that trip 2 weeks BEFORE the wedding instead of 2 weeks AFTER...I would not have married him...not until/unless we got it all worked out at the very least.

Your's and SO's attitude toward the situation is the key. Both parties must be willing to compromise and to accept some things. Unfortunately, attacking parenting skills puts most everyone on the defensive so it's really a landmine type of situation. Tact, lots of tact is required Smile

Good luck and remember, ST is a great place for me there, this site has made all the difference in the world for me.

steptwins's picture

:O You are right - self entitlement never stops. Its just grows with time (& practice).

overit2's picture

Sorry to hear it's not working-was it this way before you moved in with her though? Did you spend enough time around the kids to observe their behavior-has it escalated since you moved in?

step1973's picture

It has always been this way from the beginning. I just thought I would be able to correct things but looks like nothing has improved so I'm at deadend. I think my solution might just be to leave. I've always made my girlfriend happy and she's made my kids happy so it's not like her and I haven't tried to make everything we can work. The end is near is what i'm hearing.

rinkrats5's picture

It never SD's 15 and 18 still call their father "daddy" in that whiny little voice. Makes me want to slap them upside the head. My kids 16,17 just look at me like "are they for real?"
I say get out now - those kids have another 13 or so years of living at home. Can you stand that?

step1973's picture

Yeah it gets really annoying and the bad part is that i try to tell them quit talking baby talk. This is my girlfriends only disagreement with me because she think it's cute but to others it's annoying, my girlfriend talks back to them like that. (Big sigh). I'm sure i'm not gonna wait till they move out so i believe i'm about to cut the cord with them and my girlfriend. I thought i was the only one dealing with such madness at the house but wow... I'm sort of relief that others like yourself is dealing with this. Maybe my decision to split won't be so bad afterall. Thanks Rinkrats5 Smile

overit2's picture

It just makes me so sad for the kids you know...they probably have grown attached-yours and hers. All over this site I see such contempt, dislike and neglect towards kids-when they are ones that suffer from the divorce. It creates a host of emotional issues for them to deal with...but in any event-this site is about the adults not the kids.

Please in the future consider this before you decide to move in with somebody-especially if you already saw problems-why the heck do you move in and create another family situation to NOW breakup AGAIN (for your kids sakes as well) because you didn't think things through before moving in. If there are behavioral issues-you try to resolve those BEFORE you blend a family-not AFTER.

The kids are the ones harmed in this-they are the ones w/out voices and are harmed by this in/out of adults/parent figures through their lives-and as adults we are so focused on our happiness, our time with our SO that we dont' give a damn what we're setting the kids up to. Ughhhh.

mommylove's picture

Seriously? How, exactly does this "advice" "HELP" this guy in his CURRENT situation? Hindsight is always 20/20, so I'm sure that maybe he could've come around to this conclusion on his own without your having to suggest it, but this is a site "where stepparents come to vent", so theoretically you can just take this response and copy and paste it in response to almost all threads where a frustrated SP has considered removing themselves from a tumultuous step situation, but again, how, exactly, would that "HELP"?

Wow. I don't know why this post bothered me so much because it really doesn't apply to my situation (no divorces or "broken families" were involved when H & got together, just single parents with children, AND I got married FOR my child rather than for myself), but yet it still bothered me because it read so judgemental!

" adults we are so focused on our happiness, our time with our SO that we dont' give a damn what we're setting the kids up to..."

Speak for yourself. I got married because I was focused on what I thought was best for my CHILD's happiness instead of my own - too bad I made the mistake of ignoring the old saying that "if Mama ain't happy - NOBODY'S happy!"

step1973's picture

Beleive me, If I could tell the future I wouldn't have gotten into it. In order to know how it would be like to be with someone long term you have to actually do it. If I knew there would be conflict, obviously I wouldn't have participated in binding families. It's easier said than done my friend.

wriggsy's picture

Unless you want your kids to start behaving like GF's kids, I would run like the wind. I know there will be heart-break for you, but the long run will be better if you do. My daughter was a pretty good kid (and I take the fact that from daycare to school, I have had teachers wishing she could stay with them because she is such a pleasure. I have her karate school owner asking her to come work for her when she is old enough because she was just that respectful! I have all the parents of her friends tell me that she is ALWAYS welcome in their home because she's so respectful). Ok...granted...she will be 14 in a few months, so I have to take into account the teen angst/attitude crap that is normal, but I am constantly having to tell her that I don't like some behavior or another and she usually says "well...stepsister or stepbrother get to do it". I continue to fight the good fight, because I know that I am doing the best I can to raise a decent human being, but it is so hard to try and blend a family when the kids have differing rules.

Yet another reason that daughter and I do not live in DH's home...not sure when/if that will happen while there are kids at home. Good days...bad days....

IIMF's picture

read your post here, I am not so sure your relationship with your Gf would work out. even in an original family, it is bad enough that if two parents, take different measures to raise the kids. always disaggrement between Dad and Mom, the kids are confused all the time, they don't know what is wrong what is right and who they should listen too. needles to say, it will add more stress on your relationship with such undocile step kids, nobody will be happy, or somebody will feel hurt.

pastepmomof3's picture

It doesn't sound like things will change. Only you can choose but it seems like the obvious answer is to get out while you still can. I think to a degree, we all think we can change a situation - i'm guilty too. Unfortunately, it usually doesn't work so then you're left trying to cope. GOod luck with your decision.

step1973's picture

I just want to say thanks for everyone listening. I wish I found this site out long before. There's never a good time to break up so I'm going to do this as soon as possible but when the kids are at their dads. Wish me luck everyone. I'll update you all after the news.

Milomom's picture

step1973, welcome to our wonderful StepTalk family!! Glad you found us! This website saved my relationship with my BF (and literally saved my sanity as well - lol). It's such a relief to know that I am NOT crazy, I am NOT alone when I go through certain situations with skids or BM, that it ISN'T normal when a parent tries to "guilt-parent" or be "friends" with their kids instead of being their PARENT, etc... I could go on and on and on.

I wish you best of luck with your decision to end your relationship with your girlfriend. I can tell you have been mulling over this decision for a long time - and things have been building and building. I give you a ton of credit for finding this site and posting here to ask for advice. I am NEVER one to advocate a breakup unless someone does everything they can to help improve the situation (except for drastic situations like physical abuse, etc...), as I'm an old-fashioned, hopeless romantic. You seem to have done everything you can - for the good of everyone in your situation.

Keep us posted on how everything goes. Maybe your GF will surprise you and open her eyes to save your relationship.

CMO73's picture

Hello everyone ..... I just read this thread from 7 years ago ...

I am in the exact situation, the difference is that I have 3 boys (8 to 13) and my gf has 3 boys too (8-12) ... but everything else is exactly the same, it's like I'm reading what I wanted to write.
We have been together for 2 years, but living together for 3 months ... and that's when things turned for the worse.

I can't stand being around her kids ... all I hear is "mommy, mommy" all the time they are at home ... her mom does EVERYTHING for them, and they are so ungrateful and entitled, they whine if anything is not as expected, and just as day mommy can we buy this or that ....

The are LOUD all day, screaming randomly crap all day and jumping off the furniture like monkeys, and laughing and screaming their lungs out, farting and burping in each others faces and laughing ... I don't like going out with them .. it's embarrassing and annoying, they behave the same way outside. Watching a movie is impossible, they are wrestling and laughing loud ... but they insist that they are watching ...

The middle one is the worst from all three ... on top of being all of the above, he is mean and always tries to hurt my sons (and everyone else) feelings whenever he can, because he knows everything, and he can do anything better or faster and everyone else sucks or is stupid. He doesn't have the idea of what is staying in line waiting for anything ... he needs to be the first one to get the piece of cake or the meal, or the one that gets the biggest portion, etc, etc .. and pushes others and cries if it doesn't happen.

I was very strict raising my kids and they are very well behaved now, I did my job already and they know how to behave in all settings ... and they just laugh at the other kids stupidity, but I don't laugh, it bothers me and puts me in bad mood, to the point that it affects my relationship with my girlfriend, and makes me doubt if the relationship is a good idea. I think piece of mind is priceless.

I have really tried to accept those kids, but just the idea of seeing the middle one's face or hearing his annoying voice for the rest of my life, is killing me ... It's hard enough to not be with my kids half of the time, but on top of that I have to be with those kids a few days a week, I usually hide in my bedroom and avoid even seeing their faces.

Their mom doesn't discipline them at all ... is not consistent and too soft, so they do whatever they want .. they just hear "the next time you go in timeout", or "what do you say?" .. after farting or burping in someones face ..

I have told their mom that her kids are very stressful and annoying and it's affecting how I feel .. now she is all like .. all the love I felt and professed for her was all BS, it was all a lie, etc etc .. It was all my fault .. I lied to her, etc, etc ... but I never lied ... I had all the best intentions ... we were in the relationship for 2+ years and we dreamed with a life together ... but I wasn't counting on her kids and how much it would affect me. I wanted to grow old with her and I tried to accept them, but it's just too hard to be happy with them around.

tough times for me ahead Sad

curious to see what others think ...

peace ...

Just1question's picture

It sounds to me like she’s guilt-tripping you and doesn’t want to take responsibility in disciplining her kids. It’s not the kids that bother you, but the way they behave. She needs to follow through with her discipline and make sure BD is on the same page (at least to some degree) about what’s acceptable and what’s not, especially in public. She should be a bit more sensitive in listening to how you feel and really try to implement some ground rules for her kids-granted-they will be wild sometimes, but they should also listen to instruction and know when to stop. I have 5 siblings and we all got a little crazy sometimes, but if we didn’t listen our parents (mostly dad) would “take us around back” aka:ass-whoopin’.

If she doesn’t get a handle on her kids then it’s not fair for you, her, your kids, or her kids for you to stay around. Unless, you’re able to adapt her mentality, it’s always going to be a struggle. BUT, if you think SHE is worth it then maybe you guys can come up with a plan and hope for the best as you grin and bear the situation.

CMO73's picture

Thank you .. yeah .. the BD is an idiot and never disciplined them ... so my gf gave up on the discipline years ago ... so in the other house, they can do whatever they want, and nobody will tell them anything either ... we spoke again and I guess I'll try a little longer to accept the kids, and see how it goes .. that's not the ONLY thing going on .. but the main one ...

My GF objects everytime I want to take my kids when it's not my day (BM has something at work for example) .. clearly she doesn't want my kids around any longer than what the judge said, and has no problems saying it ... but she would drop anything to her kids any extra time ... and I don't complain, even if I'm not excited about it, because I understand that they are her kids and it's understandable that she wants to see them ... but that apparently that's not allowed for me ... so thats another reason for arguments Sad

JustGettingUsedToThis's picture

When I met my step kids, I thought they were angels. I would have bucked it if I didn't think they were great kids. But then, things changed. I started seeing major issues with the kids.

And my own kids have also gone through phases of lying which drove both of us crazy.

I guess my point is that you never know, but you do have to do what you feel is right in your heart. Although we are having major issues, I am still glad I married my husband and I am still willing to do what it takes to make it through, which is why I'm in counseling to deal with some of those issues.

Does being with them (not just her) feel right? If so, maybe get some outside help.

CMO73's picture

Being with them, does NOT feel right ... just the idea that they will be my family, it doesn't feel right ... Sad because my kids mostly get along with them ..
It just feels right being with my gf .. but the reality is that her kids are there and they are not going anywhere ... we are considering counseling ...

CMO73's picture

Being with them, does NOT feel right ... just the idea that they will be my family, it doesn't feel right ... Sad because my kids mostly get along with them ..
It just feels right being with my gf .. but the reality is that her kids are there and they are not going anywhere ... we are considering counseling ...

marblefawn's picture

Yea, you probably need to bail. She had no choice in having kids like that, but you do.

But your statement, "In order to know how it would be like to be with someone long term you have to actually do it," is just BS. You could have dated her for three years and found out her kids are annoying and ended this a lot more easily.

More honest would be: "We rushed in because it felt good, we didn't know if it would work out, we did it anyway without caring how our blended families would be affected, and now I'm not having fun anymore and I want out."

Why would you shack up with some woman, her kids and your kids before you know you're in it for the long haul? If you don't know her well enough to commit to her, why would you drag your and her poor kids into that household and commingle your messes? Do you think this was good for your kids? Do you think having men move in and out of her kids' lives is good when they're already troubled? I don't understand people who get in living situations with people they hardly know. Now you, your girlfriend, her kids and your kids must ALL break up. That's just great for kids, especially after you both already put your kids through divorce. If you don't know her well enough to know her kids will drive you nuts, don't shack up with her. I know it's nice having that right there when you want it, but have a little self control. You're a parent. It's not fair to drag your kids into every relationship with you.

I hope that wasn't offensive, but geez, I'm shocked people are so self indulgent without regard to possible outcomes and how it will affect kids. It's sad.

Just1question's picture

They have only been living together for 3 months, that’s not a significant amount of time. I’m sure moving in together revealed characteristics that weren’t noticed before or weren’t quite a bother. People try to work things out and be together when they care about each other. Kids obviously complicate things. You’re right though, he can choose to have these kids in her and she can’t-that’s why he’s on this forum, to get perspective and a few opinions. Can you ever be 100% sure that you KNOW its going to work out? No, you can’t, that’s why there are so many divorced people (obviously) on this forum. You’re comment is harsh.. it’s hard to care so much for someone but be conflicted by having step kids and a blended family. At least he’s not trying to stick around long term and become a complete asshole to his gfs kids.

marblefawn's picture

This is what he wrote: "I've lived with my girlfriend and her 2 kids for 1 1/2 yrs."

I bet he didn't even know her that long when they moved in together, which is my point.
Rather than dragging his kids into that mess, he should have at least found out if he could tolerate hers by dating longer.

Yea, there are a lot of divorced people. And it's no wonder - this site is full of stories about people playing house with all of combinations of kids after knowing each other for a year or less and then utter shock that the person is a jerk. Nope, couldn't POSSIBLY see that coming! What is the matter with people that they can't be alone for two seconds? That they can't really get to know a partner before shacking up or marrying?

I feel bad for kids getting dragged in and out of adult relationships, households, and circumstances. Any wonder they're so screwed up. People all want these kids, but they don't want to act like parents once they have them.

Just1question's picture

Holy Cow! You have a huge chip on your shoulder!! Did you have a terrible upbringing or something?? I married my husband after 5 months of dating, didn’t even live with him before getting married. Guess I’m a horrible, terrible, lustful person since I couldn’t wait right? Sheesh-

Just1question's picture

You’re reading the old thread from 7 years ago. The RECENT poster has been living with his GF for 3 months...

marblefawn's picture

Yea, I'm not hearing a constructive argument against what I'm saying. No chip. Just commonsense.

Just1question's picture

The MOST RECENT poster who re-opened this thread has been with his gf for 2 years, but living together for 3 months. So, is 1 year and 9 months not long enough to be together to “know each other” in your book?? Also, how do you expect one to anticipate completely how things will be once moving forward in a relationship? Sometimes you don’t understand how a situation will play out until you’re in that situation. What you’re saying ISNT common sense. And I’ll tell you again, I only courted my husband for 5 months before we got married. Engaged only 8 days. I’m sure people like you frown upon that by the way you talk in your post.

marblefawn's picture

So why not get married after five weeks? Or five days? What could possibly go wrong?

If adults without kids want to take impulsive risks, that's fine. But parents should be more cautious when pairing up. There are a lot more people unwillingly dragged into that situation. It's more complex with more factors to sink things.

And no, I don't think 21 months is that long when you're affecting so many lives. What's the big rush?